Researchers Find Gamers have Better Visual CapabilitiesCategory: Science & Technology
Posted: June 13, 2013 09:02AM
Some people can be dismissive of video games, claiming that they have no redeeming value, such as improving a player's decision making skills. Researchers that study gaming's effect on people though are coming to different conclusions. Those at Duke University, after searching for college students that do not play video games, found that gamers have superior visual sensitivity.
When playing a video game, like a first person shooter, it is important that you are able to quickly recognize threats and allies. This requires the player's brain interprets the screen more efficiently than a non-gamer's, at least in theory. To test this, the researchers showed non-gamers and intensive gamers, a total of 125 people, a ring of eight letters for a tenth of a second. After a delay, the participant was asked what letter was in a specific place. The delays ranged from 0.013 seconds to 2.5 seconds and for each interval the gamers performed better.
There are three possible reasons the gamers performed better, though the researchers believe that, based on these results, a greater visual memory retention is not the reason. Instead they suggest it could actually be a combination of the other two reasons; gamers may be able to see things more quickly, and are able to make better decisions based on what information they have. Only brain-activity information will be able to determine what the true reason is.
Source: Duke University